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  1. Steven001

    Steven001

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    Hi folks,

    I I bought myself a Praktica MTL 50 a few months back try shooting film for the first time. I've shot 2 1/2 rolls of film and still haven't got any developed, so I don't even know if it works (silly I know!). I bought the camera mainly for portraits and "memories" of days out/trips etc, but the light meter doesn't work as it should, which means I have to faf about getting my phone out and loading up a light metering app before I take a photo

    The light meter functions as two LED arrows (up and down), but they're both almost always equally bright regards of my exposure settings. Sometimes it will show the scene as over exposed when it's very clearly going to be massively under exposed and vice versa.

    Does anyone know if there is a way to sort this?

    Thanks :)
     
  2. ChrisH

    ChrisH

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    Have you put new button cells in ?
     
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  3. john.margetts

    john.margetts

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    What lens are you using? It can make a difference to how you use the meter.
     
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  4. Steven001

    Steven001

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    Hi John, I'm using a Pentacon Auto 50mm 1.8.
    I don't know what button cells are sorry, so that I'll be no!
     
  5. ChrisH

    ChrisH

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    Does it have some tiny batteries under a little screw in cap underneath. All my old Practica had them if I remember correctly.

    Button cell = watch battery = hearing aid batery.
     
    Last edited: Mar 19, 2017
  6. john.margetts

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    Well, that lens should cause no problems. I wouldn't have thought the batteries were a problem, either, if the LEDs are lighting ok.
     
  7. droj

    droj

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  8. Jao

    Jao

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    Hi, the MTL5 was a stop down meter system IIRC. Are you stopping the lens down to meter? If I remember there is a meter switch/DoF preview that is separate to the shutter release that you need to press to take a reading and then you adjust the shutter and aperture accordingly. Apologies if you know all this.
     
    Last edited: Mar 19, 2017
  9. Steven001

    Steven001

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    No it just has a small circuit board under the cap next to the battery.
    Yeah that's the battery I replaced the dud ime with and I have set the film speed as well.
    Yes it is stop down metering, which I THINK understand. I took a few pictures on my phone looking through the viewfinder with the light meter activated

    F16 @ 1/250th (taken indoor should be reading under exposed)

    [​IMG]

    F16 @ 1/30th

    [​IMG]

    F1.8 @ 1/5th

    [​IMG]
     
  10. droj

    droj

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    So when you took the above vf images to show the meter indicators, you were pressing the stop-down lever on the camera body by the lens mount?
     
  11. Peter B

    Peter B

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    In case you haven't got one, the manual can be found at http://www.cameramanuals.org/praktica_pdf/praktica_mtl_50.pdf and the metering section on page 23 suggest correct exposure when both lights are lit. There is then further information on the next few pages which would be better understood by having the camera in front of you while playing with the controls.
     
  12. Steven001

    Steven001

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    Yes the black lever which activates the light meter.
    Thanks Peter, I've got the same one which I downloaded. For metering I'm doing the same as I would on my dslr in manual, with the addition of pressing the meter lever. Set aperture, press light meter and adjust shutter speed until both arrows light up, but for whatever reason it's not actually working to the correct exposure (no where near it either).
     
  13. droj

    droj

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    Ok, you seem to be on the ball. Maybe it's time to assume faulty electronics and use, if not a phone app, then a handheld meter ...? Which might seem a faff but is what we all had to do once and some of us still do (and which I quite enjoy).
     
  14. Jao

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    Hi Steven, on the basis of your viewfinder images, I would say the meter is probably shot. These were East German budget cameras and time can take its toll on them . That said if the rest of the camera works I would use with a hand held meter. I prefer these to a phone app, but that is a personal preference. Even with Matrix Meter cameras I still prefer to incident meter with a hand held, strange I know, but true!
     
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  15. Steven001

    Steven001

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    Thanks for all your replies folks. I don't know how accurate the phone app is, I won't found out until I get them developed which hopefully I'll do this week!

    There's a Pentax Spotmatic in the classified, I wonder if that would be a good replacement?

    Edit: Nevermind, it's sold!
     
    Last edited: Mar 20, 2017
  16. droj

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    Spotmatics were sexy in their day (and very serviceable - meaning simple and easy for the hand and eye). But Olympus OM's when they came out were even sexier, if less friendly to the hand if you wanted to adjust them. Canons were solid but a bit clunky in feel and looks. Minoltas maybe likewise. But if you were at a war-front, lying in the s*** with shrapnel and bricks whizzing past, you probably had a Nikon - the best of all worlds, unless you could afford a Leica ...
     
    Last edited: Mar 20, 2017

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